If you haven’t experienced sadness yet, you will sometime. It’s inevitable. It’s also probable that you will experience a broken heart. After all, life is not all smooth sailing, and we can have painful memories of times that were really hard to bear.
The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 3:1, in a verse written by Solomon: “There is a time for everything, or a season for everything under the sun.” And that includes broken hearts. Solomon went on to say: “There’s a time to be born, a time to die; a time to plant, a time to harvest. A time to destroy, a time to rebuild”. (verses 2-3 – TLB)
So what can we do about broken hearts and broken dreams? Ecclesiastes 7:3 says, “Sorrow is better than laughter; for by the sadness of the countenance, the heart is made better”. I like The Living Bible’s version: “Sorrow is better than laughter; for sadness has a refining influence on is”.
Sadness Makes Us Grow
How can this be? How can sadness have a refining influence on us? Does this really make sense? Yes, it does—for, during times of sadness, we grow more in our understanding of God’s love and provision. Experiencing sadness is normal, and healthy and necessary for our inner healing.
Solomon went on to say, “there is a time to mourn” or “a time to grieve” (Ecclesiastes 3:4). God gave us the ability to mourn the loss of someone who was close to us. Think how you felt when a loved one or a close family member died. You were upset—you mourned their passing. And that was a good thing to do; it was natural—it is necessary. There is a time to mourn, and there is a time to stop mourning. God gave Joshua time to mourn after Moses died. But he also let Joshua know when it was time to move on. God said: “Moses my servant is dead. Now arise and lead my people across the Jordan River to the Promised Land” (Joshua 1:2). In other words, shake yourself off and walk into the new future that God is preparing for you.
Sometimes we need to act on these words. Life does have hard moments, but we can’t stay with them. We need to move on to new experiences. Don’t stay with the past. Take steps to prepare for something new. Create new experiences, make new friends, and go to new places if you have to. As you move in a different direction, you will sense you’re entering a new season of your life. And that’s a good thing to do. Solomon said, “There’s a time to find, a time to lose, a time for keeping, a time for throwing away” (Ecclesiastes 3:6). If you don’t move forward, hardness of heart will occur and regrets take over. And that’s no way to live.
What Is a Hard Heart Like?
The Bible does not refer to hardness as a physical property, but as a moral and spiritual quality. A hard heart is all about being rebellious, sarcastic, being negative, suspicious, criticising others, and manipulating others. Some people turn their broken hearts into shields of protection—and a spiritual blockage occurs. Communication with God stops. And as you rebel against God’s divine love, you are difficult to live with, turning others away by your ungenerous spirit.
In Proverbs we have a warning: “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the well spring of life” (Proverbs 4:23). In other words, be careful with your thoughts. Don’t let them get out of control. Jesus was talking to his friends in Matthew 12 and said: “A good man’s heart determines His speech. A good man’s speech reveals the rich treasures within him. An evil-hearted man is filled with venom, and his speech reveals it” (Matthew 12:34-35). I prefer The Message paraphrase. It makes sense and says: “It’s your heart, not the dictionary that gives meaning to your words. A good person produces good deeds”.
I’m also talking about humility here—humility keeps your love flowing to God and out to others. If you keep in close touch with God, your heart will remain tender and responsive. Don’t allow the hurts of life to block God’s love for you. He will heal your broken heart if you remain humble.
There’s a wonderful verse in Psalm 147:3 that says, “He heals the broken in heart and binds up their wounds”. Healing takes time. You break your arm or leg, and it doesn’t heal in a few days—it takes weeks if not months. And so with our Christian life.
If you’ve been bruised along the way, look to your Heavenly Father who is a specialist in the art of healing. His divine grace in our lives will bring supernatural healing which can mend a broken heart.